Developments in depositing
New compact cooking and depositing systems enable confectionery makers to produce high quality hard candies for the same investment as traditional die forming technology. They also provide cost-effective entry to the confectionery market for companies in developing countries.
Compact systems offer a rapid return on investment from outputs up to 800 kg/hour, with the flexibility, cost and quality benefits that have already persuaded many companies to switch from die forming to depositing.
Depositing typically offers a higher quality appearance with improved clarity, plus a smoother 'mouth feel' with quicker flavour release. Other advantages include the ability to make a wide range of products with high consumer appeal, in a variety of product weights, and with accurate control of weight and shape.
Solid hard candy, two-colour centre-fill hard candy, two-colour striped hard candy and fruit or milk/cream-based candies can all be made on one compact line. Three-colour can be added.
Continuous operation ensures consistent quality, and also reduces labour requirements. Rapid product changeover times are achieved with minimal waste, and maintenance requirements are minimal.
Innovative technology now allows confectionery makers to produce a wide range of sugar-free candies on an existing production system.
The market for sugar free confectionery is growing rapidly to satisfy demand in many parts of the world for alternatives to conventional candy, which match the perceived benefits of a healthy diet and lifestyle. Vacuum skids have now been developed for retrofitting to installed plant, and provide confectioners with the option of extending their product range. Sugar free candies can be produced with the same wide variety of colours and flavours, such as milk and crème, as conventional confectionery. The added-value options of stripes, layers and liquid centres are all available.
This distinct style of confectionery involves blending and cooking a sugar free material, or polyol, as a sugar replacement. Isomalt is a typical polyol used successfully: this has a lower solubility, higher boiling point and higher specific heat capacity than sucrose, and therefore requires cooking to a higher temperature.
Derived from sucrose, Isomalt has physical properties similar to sugar resulting in confectionery products that have a texture and flavour similar to those made with sucrose.
A vacuum evaporator is added to the conventional production system, in order to achieve the level of viscosity necessary for depositing. This was proven in the APV Baker Food Process Centre at Peterborough, where production scale equipment is available for trial and development work by customers.